Does the robot have a mind? : mind perception and attitudes towards robots predict use of an eldercare robot?
Stafford, Rebecca Q.; MacDonald, Bruce A.; Jayawardena, Chandimal; Wegner, Daniel M; Broadbent, Elizabeth
Citation:Stafford, R.Q., MacDonald, B.A., Jayawardena,C., Wegner, D.M. and Broadbent, E. (2014). Does the robot have a mind? : mind perception and attitudes towards robots predict use of an eldercare robot? International Journal of Social Robotics, 6 (1), 17-32 doi 10.1007/s12369-013-0186-y
Permanent link to Research Bank record:http://hdl.handle.net/10652/2429
Robots are starting to be developed for aged care populations and some of these have been made into commercial products that have been well received. However, little is known about the psychological factors that promote acceptance or rejection of robots by older people. Finding out more about these psychological determinants of robot uptake and acceptance is the primary focus of the study described in this paper. A healthcare robot feasibility study was conducted in a retirement village. Older people (n=25) were invited to use a prototype robot with healthcare functions over a two week period. Questionnaires were completed before and after the period. It was found that residents who held significantly more positive attitudes towards robots, and perceived robot minds to have less agency (ability to do things) were more likely to use the robot. It was also found that attitudes towards robots improved over time in robot-users. Our results suggest that the cognitions older people hold about robots may influence their decisions to use robots. The study results also validate participants’ subjective self-reports of attitudes towards robots and perceptions of robot mind, against the objective measure of robot use. Interventions to foster adaptive cognitions could be developed and applied in the design, deployment and marketing of robots to promote their use and acceptance.